The Cottage View Drive-In
The Cottage View Drive-In

Faculty member Tom Schroeder recently wrote about his memories of small-town drive-in theaters in a three-part essay series with the Walker Art Center.

As the epicenter of social life before the advent of the VHS and home entertainment center in the 1970's, Schroeder has fond memories of the Hilltop Drive-In Theater in Wisconsin. He remembers classic horror movies being shown there and recalls his distaste for "the good guy", favoring instead the monster. He recalls the near violence that broke out when a film reel would break and the "angry mob of villagers."

Schroeder continued to frequent drive-ins after moving to Minnesota, though the audience he saw there began to change after the 1990's. Rather than a mob of angry villagers, he now saw families primarily occupy the drive-ins. At the close of one of the last drive-ins in Minnesota, Schroeder felt the world he knew as a teen disappearing while witnessing the longing in the faces of the drive-ins final attendees.  

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